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Radiation Hardening for Aircraft Electronics

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) intends to negotiate and award a sole-source contract to Boeing Radiation Effects Lab (BREL) for an effort entitled “Identify Cost of Radiation Hardening Solutions as a Function of Radiation Environments for Tailkit Electronics.”

DTRA requires a cost to harden (CTH) study to gather data that will assist future research and development in the technical, complex field of parametric radiation hardening as a function of radiation environments for tailkit electronics.

The scope of this effort is to document the cost to achieve nuclear survivable electronics for the four levels of radiation hardness, as a function of total dose, peak gamma dose rate, neutron fluence, and Single Event Upset (SEU). The costs are associated with the design, test and maintenance of nuclear survivability at those specified environments.

According to DTRA, the Boeing Radiation Effects Lab (BREL) is the only responsible source reasonably available in the market to conduct this CTH study. BREL’s proprietary Radiation Effects Database will enable DTRA to come up with the most realistic cost to harden at the specified radiation levels.

In addition, BREL’s level of expertise in designing, testing and qualifying radiation hardened systems, along with their proprietary database access, will provide DTRA with a CTH that will validate and support future R&D efforts to advance this technology enabling cost-savings on these future efforts.

Boeing Solid-State Electronics Development (SSED), another division of Boeing, is the subject matter expert on mitigation of single event effects and redesign of electronic using Rad Hard By Design techniques. According to DTRA, the exclusive relationship between BREL and Boeing SSED is necessary to obtain further proprietary data on Rad Hard By Design techniques that will be needed to validate this study.

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